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969: Healthcare Workers with Appropriate PPE Dont Get COVID-19
- Healthcare workers with appropriate PPE (protective suits, masks, gloves, goggles, face shields, and gowns) dont develop COVID-19 symptoms or test positive for SARS-CoV-2, as per a Chinese study.
- The study examined data on 116 doctors and 304 nurses who were deployed to Wuhan, China, for six to eight weeks from January 24, 2020 to April 7, 2020. They were all involved in aerosol-generating procedures, and were provided with appropriate PPE to care for patients with COVID-19.
- Participants worked four- to six-hour shifts over an average of 5.4 days a week, and spent an average of 16.2 hours weekly working in intensive care units (ICU).
- None of them reported COVID-19 symptoms when they were deployed to hospitals in Wuhan. After they returned home, all tested negative for SARS-CoV-2 specific nucleic acids and IgG or IgM antibodies.
- In Wuhan, most of the affected health professionals became infected in the early phase of the outbreak due to a lack of appropriate PPE
- More than 80% of patients required critical care and 10%-15% received mechanical ventilation.
- All participants received similar PPE and proper training to work in the ICU, regular wards, and for cases involving aerosol-generating procedures (N95 respirator masks, medical suits, isolation gowns, aprons, gloves, eye protection, and hair coverings. In areas with no Covid-19 contact, workers wore surgical masks).
- All of the study participants performed at least one procedure generating aerosols, including tracheal intubation, non-invasive mechanical ventilation, gastric intubation, sputum aspiration, aerosol inhalation, tracheostomy, and throat swab collection.
- Out of hospital, they wore masks in public, followed strict social distancing rules, and stayed in designated hotels.
[Source: The BMJ, online June 10, 2020.]
Dr KK Aggarwal
President CMAAO, HCFI and Past National President IMA